Flying a flag for
our Brave Troops
In 1943, adequate facilities were needed for test and evaluation of rockets being developed for the Navy by the California Institute of Technology (CalTech); at the same time, the Navy also needed a new proving ground for aviation ordnance. The Naval Ordnance Test Station (NOTS) was established in response to those needs in November 1943, forming the foundations of NWC. The NOTS mission was defined in a letter by the Secretary of the Navy dated 8 November 1943:
". . . A station having for its primary function the research, development and testing of weapons, and having additional function of furnishing primary training in the use of such weapons."
It was due to this decision by the Navy that the town of Ridgecrest grew by quantum leaps over the next 10 years. Subsequently, it has matured into a very nice little community that supports the Navy mission and the civilians who work on the Naval Station as well as the civilian community at large.
In Memory of
Sgt. Troy David Jenkins
US Army, 3rd Battalion, 187th Infantry. Killed in action
This site is designed to be a continuing written, pictorial, nostalgic and historic journal of the impressions and experiences of the people who are living or have lived here. The people who helped from the 1940's and subsequent decades, to build and populate the town of Ridgecrest and the
NWC (NOTS) Naval Station.
This journal is dedicated to all of those who lived and made this history in the High Mojave Desert town called Ridgecrest. It is a tribute to the town and the people who made it what it is.
It is highly graphic intensive and therefore your patience is requested in loading these pages. Many of the photographs are clickable and will lead you to other sites which will further explain or identify the contents.
Ridgecrest From the Air
This is NOT the Ridgecrest I saw when I first came into the valley in 1943. For one thing it certainly doesn't look desolated and unpopulated. It also looks a lot greener. But no matter how much it has changed in my absence, it still looks a lot like home!!!
Photo by Tom Bozack
Indian Wells Valley Panorama by Tom Bozack
Above - thanks to some satellites and Googles mapping system you see the full picture of the Indian Wells Valley and Trona on the right hand side. At this scale some of the features are hard to discern but what you see is what has developed since 1943. Below - at a much larger scale you see most of Ridgecrest and the service and living areas on the Naval station.